The Academic Editing Circle is a group of professional editors who have organized to make editing services easily available to Black and Indigenous people building academic careers—as students, scholars, researchers, teachers, mentors, administrators, and more.
For Black and Indigenous scholars and researchers:
We connect scholars with editors available to provide pro bono academic editing services.
We offer resources for finding and hiring Black and Indigenous professional editors who specialize in academic works.
For Black and Indigenous editors:
- We promote professional Black and Indigenous editors, groups, and associations.
- We provide mentoring in academic editing skills and freelance business skills on request.
For non-Black editors:
- We build community among freelance editors invested in dismantling white supremacy and promoting social justice.
In June of 2020, an organizing group called Particles for Justice called on non-Black people engaged in academic work to #StrikeForBlackLives, #ShutDownAcademia, educate ourselves on ending white supremacy, and take action to support justice. The Academic Editing Circle is a loosely organized group of professional academic editors who responded by organizing to ensure editorial services are easily available to Black and Indigenous people building academic careers—as students, scholars, researchers, teachers, mentors, administrators, and more.
Read more about our background and goals.
We aim to use our skills to support the intellectual and creative work of Black and Indigenous scholars, researchers, and editors.
Disparities in support for writing and publishing—financial and otherwise—harm everyone by contributing to unequal and unjust opportunities and outcomes that perpetuate the dominance of white supremacist culture across the spectrum of intellectual endeavor.
Scholars, researchers, and teachers who publish are more likely to win tenure, more likely to be invited to present, more likely to be funded, and more likely to be heard. Many well-funded and resourced scholars and researchers, in the US and elsewhere in the world, work with professional editors before submitting manuscripts to a journal or book publisher. Academic editors like us have honed particular editing and communication skills and spend a large part of our working lives helping academic writers achieve their publishing goals.
Some of our clients write editing budgets into their research grants to support dissemination of findings through publications and presentations. Some clients have access to departmental funds they can use for editing. Some clients pay out of pocket for professional editing. All of these avenues of funding are affected by individual and structural racism.
We are currently offering pro bono academic editing services to Black and Indigenous scholars on request.
We invite you to reach out if you would like to work with us.
We invite you to forward this invitation to friends, colleagues, and students.
Read more about academic editing.
Editing services can be useful for any writing project, from journal articles to poster presentations, book chapters to funding proposals, CVs, and personal statements. We can also offer pro bono editing for personal creative projects that may not be eligible for department or other academic funding.
We are actively imagining other ways we could apply our skills to support justice in academia. A few ideas follow this note. If you are willing, please tell us what aspects of our offer sound useful to you, and which do not. We are committed to responding to needs and requests and to learning along the way.
Read more about our ideas for future offerings.
(1) Facilitation of an online writing-for-publication group
Writing-for-publication groups can help academic writers maintain commitment and accountability to the writing side of their career, learn new skills, build relationships with colleagues, and increase writing and publishing productivity. We believe participants learn the most from each other. Our group can offer administrative support to organize, host, and facilitate an online group; ideas on topics to explore based on past experience supporting such groups; and presentations and further resources on topics requested by participants.
A pilot writing-for-publication group will begin in April 2021. It is currently restricted to researchers affiliated with the University of Illinois at Chicago. If you are interested in joining an open online group later in 2021, please email us at email@example.com.
(2) Fundraising for related work, including support for BIPOC editors
Our group is also planning to raise funds to support this work. We are open to and indeed request ideas for how to use funds we raise. Below are some of our ideas thus far:
- Submission fees to Open Access journals
- Consulting fees to BIPOC professors and academic consultants to share their knowledge with the online writing-for-publication group as facilitators or guest experts
- Financial support for BIPOC editors building their careers, such as training funds and compensation for pro bono editing they wish to offer their chosen clients
- Pooled funding to #BuyBackBlackDebt among Black people pursuing academic or academic editing careers
Our fundraising work is not yet organized. However, if you have a specific request for funds, please contact us.